SLAC-Stanford study suggests that tailored 3D nanostructures can enhance activity and stability of fuel cell catalysts
Study finds hitting thermodynamic sweet spot in dilute, boosted gasoline engines has potential for fuel economy gains between 23% and 58%

Fisker: Karma fire caused by fault in low-temperature cooling fan; initiates recall

The roadside fire involving a Fisker Karma sedan on August 10 in Woodside, CA was caused by an internal fault in the low-temperature cooling fan, according to a statement released by Fisker Automotive.

The investigation conducted by Fisker engineers, working with an independent fire expert from Pacific Rim Investigative Services Group, located the ignition source to the left front of the Karma, forward of the wheel, where the low temperature cooling fan is located. The final conclusion was that this sealed component had an internal fault that caused it to fail, overheat and start a slow-burning fire.

Fisker is now conducting a recall with respect to this cooling fan unit. The company is working with the responsible supplier. The company says it does not expect this recall campaign to have a material financial impact on Fisker.

Fisker has already contacted its retailer network. Customers are expected to be contacted by retailers, ahead of their receiving formal notice from the company by mail, to have the cooling fan replaced with a unit that meets the required specifications. At the same time an additional fuse will be installed for added protection.

In their investigation, independent experts established that the incident was not caused by the Lithium-ion battery pack, new technology components, engine component packaging or unique exhaust routing of the Fisker Karma.

I have been incredibly impressed with the way Fisker has handled this incident. I have personally started seven technology companies and know from direct experience that the US needs more innovative companies of this type, especially in the automobile sector. Fisker is a great company and one that I am personally planning to invest in. I look forward to getting behind the wheel of my next Fisker.

—Rudy Burger, the owner of the Karma in the Woodside incident



Electrified vehicles are introducing many new components. A few of them may have potential problems. The early days of our famous ICEs also had multiple problems, specially on cold days. Electrified vehicles problems will be identified and fixed much faster than were our older ICE powered cars and trucks multiple problems.


Electric cooling fans have been used in ICEs since 1930 when GM pioneered the now-standard heater core and fan.

Pneumatic tires have come through some difficult times, a Model T cost $500 and might blow a tire on the trip to town to get a tire - a set of 5 tires was $140.

EVs better be starting with all the advances created by the ICE vehicle.

The comments to this entry are closed.